Bob Hagemann

Corgi Spirits

Jersey City, NJ, USA

The Corgi

A most venerable beast, the favorite dog of the Queen of England, the Corgi Dog- agile, able, agreeable and friendly. To understand the breed, one must have an open mind because the Corgi Dog is a fast learner- but extremely independence minded. The same holds true for the pragmatic, friendly and highly ambitious owner of the new Corgi distillery located pretty close to downtown Jersey City.

Once there, you'll find what appears to be, from the outside: a movie studio from the 1920's. Painted a strikingly dark color against the red brick warehouses in the neighborhood- the warehouse/distillery calls out to the adventurous, thirsty drinker. The new Light Rail line, located beside the distillery is slowly bringing the thirsty and the curious out this marvelous distillery And if you don't want to take the train, you might find it may be easier to take a car service. But don't fret. It's not too far. Just visit!

Upon entering the distillery, the mood is theatrical and the tasting area takes the front and center with a deep dive into a cool Jazz era. Behind you is a darker, more masculine space with Asian-style carpets on the floor, dark leather furniture, wallpaper meant to resemble books and a fireplace with mantel that probably lights up to look more realistic.

But this isn't why you've traveled the distance from wherever you are in NY or NJ. You've come because of the quality spirits that are produced in either the Kentucky made- Vendome Still or the new, European- modern iStill, which resembles an Apple computer in the size and shape of this contraption. (They call the iStill, 'taste-rich distilling')... But as we all know, fancy equipment doesn't necessarily make fine spirits- but worry not. The spirits that are carefully distilled from these gleaming vessels are absolutely world class. They certainly are unlike anything that is being made in NJ right now, and certainly as fine of a gin that can be purchased on the broader liquor market.

This gin is one of the finest gins made anywhere in the world. To understand what goes into a production such as Corgi Spirits, one must first learn a little bit about the entrepreneur (the passionate man) behind the brand.

The man

Bob is one of the most humble and down to earth men working virtually around the the distilling industry. He is not prideful - his own words- and feels very lucky to have such supportive family to encourage his success after doing many different things in life. He didn't always want to be in the distilling world, but it's crystal clear after talking to him for an hour or so that he doesn't miss the Corporate World, where he did a multitude of financial jobs, from accountant to earning an MBA from prestigious Harvard Business School.

Bob is pragmatic and kind. And he has a mission. A portion of the sales go towards animal rescues in the nearby region of Jersey City. Always deflecting his past success and his rapidly approaching successes- Bob is ultra-passionate about authenticity and design, style and.... absolutely... the one thing you cannot teach, his humor, smile and deep humility.

Written by: Warren Bobrow
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